How To Make Your Brain Happy

It really is possible to do things to make yourself happy. Many of us believe that happiness just happens. We think that if you don’t feel happy, then you are stuck until it passes. UCLA neuroscience researcher Alex Korb has some insights that can create what he calls an upward spiral of happiness in your life. He says that if you do the actions of being happy, the emotion will follow.

Here’s what brain research says will make you happy:

  • Ask “What am I grateful for?” No answers? Doesn’t matter. Just searching helps.
  • Label those negative emotions. Give it a name and your brain isn’t so bothered by it.
  • Decide. Go for “good enough” instead of ‘best decision ever made on Earth.”
  • Hugs, hugs, hugs. Don’t text — touch.

So what’s the simple way to start that upward spiral of happiness?

Just send someone a thank-you email. If you feel awkward about it, you can send them this post to tell them why.

This really can start an upward spiral of happiness in your life. UCLA neuroscience researcher Alex Korb explains:

Everything is interconnected. Gratitude improves sleep. Sleep reduces pain. Reduced pain improves your mood. Improved mood reduces anxiety, which improves focus and planning. Focus and planning help with decision making. Decision making further reduces anxiety and improves enjoyment. Enjoyment gives you more to be grateful for, which keeps that loop of the upward spiral going. Enjoyment also makes it more likely you’ll exercise and be social, which, in turn, will make you happier.

Check out examples and the reasons why each step works in the Business Insider where Erik Barker has summarized Dr Korb’s work from the The Upward Spiral.

Content inspiration and image from The Business Insider

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